Wages of women scorned: the continuing battle for equality

BY AUDREY CAMINO

A collage depicting the roles that value women less in all areas of their life.

What is the most beautiful feature on a woman? Is it a thin waist? Is it thick thighs? Is it a big bust? The answer is that no matter what body type a woman has, they are all beautiful and do not deserve judgment. Yet, from an early age, girls start to worry about their size. Who is responsible for the way these little girls and women in general think?

I was bullied about my size when I was a kid but I knew better than to ever make someone else feel like that. There is something about bringing someone down that must make a bully feel powerful when in reality all they look like are assholes. Women get it the worst when it comes to being objectified. The media portrays them as sexual objects with a big bust, a big butt and a thin waist that all the men love. Because of this, women become insecure with not looking like the “desired woman” and take on extreme measure to become her when in reality, it does not exist.

Injustices like that are why I will never get tired of speaking my mind about feminism and women’s rights. Although we have made progress since 1919 when women were granted the right to vote, there are still many conflicts with how women are treated in western civilization.

Violet K. Dixon, a writer for studentpulse.com, said women worldwide experience subjugation in the form of jobs, education, sexuality and reproductive choice.  In a study by the Proceedings of the National Academy of the Sciences of the U.S (PNAS), employers made the hiring decision based on the appearance of the job candidates. The study proved that women and men employers were twice as likely to hire a man over a woman. When no job experience or skills were listed in a resume, male applicants were still expected to do better than female applicants. That is exactly why I don’t identify my gender (and even ethnicity) when applying for jobs. Unfortunately, it is very simple for an employer to judge you based only on where you are from or what your gender is, so it is best not to make that clear that way you can actually have an equal opportunity.

Women can and do vote, run for office, run their own businesses and have other powerful jobs. They are free to take care of their own lives and bodies thanks to reproductive, divorce, birth control and many other rights. So if women get all these rights exclusively for them … why are they still immensely judged, made into fools and ignored? Why do most men still see women as “only good to be a housewife”? Why are women still portrayed as sexual objects in the media?

Academy award winner, Jennifer Lawrence, recently wrote an essay about how under paid she was compared to her male co-stars in the movie “American Hustle.” She did not want to sound “spoiled” or “bossy” when asking for a higher salary to match her male co-stars so she accepted how much she got paid. Even the co-president of productions at Columbia Pictures, Hannah Minghella, gets paid about $1 million less than her male counterpart with the exact same job.

The problem with today is that there are too many people (mostly old, cis-gender, white men) having a say on what women should do with their bodies and how they should look and not enough women supporting each other while not paying any attention to what irrelevant people need to say.  Along with Lawrence, there are many female feminists that thrive in the Hollywood industry and try to bring confidence back to the lives of women. From Patricia Arquette’s speech about women’s rights and equal pay at the Oscars to Michelle Obama’s words of wisdom to students and the audience of “The Power of an Educated Girl” panel, women are starting to build themselves up and learning how to not settle for anyone’s irrationality and disrespect.

No woman should be treated differently in their career because of their gender. No woman deserves disrespect and body shaming comments because of how they look like. It took me years to finally be ok with my body, cellulite, stretch marks and all and I know that everything about me makes me beautiful. What do you love about yourself?

Illustration by Jacob Waring 

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